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Pros and Cons of Different Dog Bowl Materials

Pros and Cons of Different Dog Bowl Materials

When it comes to being a pet parent, you take on all sorts of responsibilities. You need to gather a whole lot of pet supplies to take care of your dog the best you can. Your dog needs things like food, toys, a leash and collar, a crate, and dog bowls, just to name a few of the top items on your puppy checklist. Then, you have to think about what the best options are in each of these categories. Even something that seems simple, like a dog bowl, comes in a bunch of different styles, and some are better than others.

 

Here's a look at five popular dog bowls, including ceramic, glass, stainless steel, plastic, and silicone, along with the pros and cons of each.

 

Ceramic Dog Bowls

Ceramic Dog Bowls

 

Ceramic and stoneware bowls come in a variety of sizes and designs and can provide some of the most decorative options.

 

Pros

 

  • Ceramic bowls are easy to clean, non-porous, won't hold on to bacteria, and relatively sturdy. Many are dishwasher-safe, but you have to check the cleaning instructions. Some bowls may feature a glaze that is better off with handwashing.

  • You can find ceramic bowls in many colors and sizes, featuring a variety of designs. Therefore, they're a great way to show off your pup's style, as well as match your home’s decor.

 

Cons

 

  • Ceramic bowls can crack or chip if subjected to a lot of abuse. Therefore, if your pup's an overly rambunctious eater, it might not be the best choice. Once your dog's dish gets chipped or has a crack, you need to toss it. You don't want your precious pup to end up cutting his mouth or sustaining some other type of injury. Plus, tiny cracks open up the door to nasty bacteria.

  • Because of the decorative aspects of these bowls, they can tend to get pretty pricey.

  • Ceramic bowls can also be pretty heavy, especially the larger sizes (although this can help prevent tipping).

Glass Dog Bowls

Glass Dog Bowls

 

Glass bowls are similar to ceramic dishes in many ways, with a few exceptions.

 

Pros

 

  • Glass bowls are very easy to clean and are dishwasher safe.

  • They are non-porous and won't hold on to bacteria.

  • You can find several styles of glass bowls, and they're fairly sturdy.

 

Cons

 

  • Depending on where you shop, glass bowls can get pretty expensive. However, basic styles won’t likely break the bank.

  • Since they're made of glass, they're unsurprisingly prone to more cracks and chips. If your dog knocks their bowl around, steer clear of glass dishes.

  • If you keep a glass dish near a window or outside, it could potentially start a fire under certain conditions. The glass can concentrate the rays from the sun, igniting things like a wooden deck or nearby drapery. This isn’t highly likely, but it is a possibility, so it’s worth noting.

Stainless Steel Bowls in a Neater Feeder

Stainless Steel Dog Bowls

 

Stainless steel dog bowls are the best dish you can get for your pup because they offer the ultimate in ease, health, and safety.

 

Pros

  • Stainless steel bowls are super easy to clean, dishwasher-safe, and non-porous.

  • These bowls won't hold on to any harmful bacteria.

  • Stainless steel bowls are extremely durable and unbreakable. If you have a dog that slaps their bowl around, then you definitely need to go with stainless steel. You won't have to worry about the bowls chipping, breaking, or cracking.

  • You can find stainless steel bowls in various sizes, and they're relatively inexpensive, especially considering all of the benefits.

  • They're lightweight. Look for bowls with non-skid rubber bottoms, or place them on a non-skid mat.

 

Cons

 

  • There really aren't many downsides to stainless steel bowls. Perhaps the only con would be you're somewhat limited when it comes to things like colors and designs. Some stainless steel bowls feature a coating on the outside to add a pop of color, but this can tend to wear away after a number of washings.

 

That being said, if you want to add a dash of style to your pup's mealtimes, you can always place the stainless steel bowls inside of a fun stand or feeder, like the Neater Feeder. It's the perfect way to marry form and function. Not to mention, it helps keep your floors clean, too.

Plastic Dog Bowls

Plastic Dog Bowls

 

These bowls are easy-to-come by but not the best when it comes to your pup. Remember, all plastic is not created equal, so it can be tricky to find the safest options.

 

Pros

 

  • Plastic bowls are accessible and inexpensive.

  • They come in a vast array of styles, colors, and sizes.

  • Your dog can knock it around for days, and it's highly unlikely to break.

 

Cons

 

  • Despite being fairly durable, plastic bowls don't last very long. This is because as soon as they develop a nick or scratch, they become harbingers of harmful bacteria.

  • If your dog's a big chewer, it's likely part of their plastic dish could end up in their stomach. Even small bits of plastic can cause some severe complications like intestinal blockage.

  • Some dogs can have allergic reactions to certain plastics.

  • Several plastics contain BPAs that can leach into your pup's food, causing possible health issues.

Silicone Dog Bowls

Silicone Dog Bowls

 

Silicone dog bowls are a great option for on-the-go dishes. Many collapsible and fold-up travel bowls are silicone.

 

Pros

 

  • They're easy to clean, dishwasher-safe, and convenient for travel.

  • They come in lots of colors.

  • They're relatively durable as far as being knocked around, or dropping is concerned.

 

Cons

 

  • Silicone bowls aren't a good long-term solution, so you probably don’t want to use them as an everyday dog dish.

  • Even a mild chewer can mess up a soft, silicone dish.

 

Other Considerations Regarding Dog Bowls

 

Besides the material of your dog's bowl, you have a few other things to think about too. Depending on your pup's eating habits and other factors, like age and certain health issues, you might want to think about things like slow-feed bowls or elevated feeders.

 

If your dog finds it painful to hang their head down to eat, an elevated feeder can offer relief. If your pup gobbles down their food faster than you can fill the dish, a slow feeder can help reduce the risk of things like vomiting or canine bloat.

 

It's also critical to ensure you keep your canine companion's dishes clean and don't let food and water linger in them for long periods. Taking proper care of your pet’s belongings is one of the top ways you take care of your pet.

 

For more helpful insight into how to care for your pup, check out the rest of our blog. Your canine companion will thank you, and you'll be an even better pet parent.

10 Benefits of an Elevated Dog Bowl

10 Benefits of an Elevated Dog Bowl

Are you looking for a new bowl for your pet? You may have noticed that some bowls are raised off the ground, and some sit right on the ground.  There are many reasons that your dog would benefit from a raised bowl. There are even certain medical conditions that your dog may have that your vet would recommend you elevate your dog's bowls.  This article will explain why you may want to consider getting a raised bowl for your dog and what are some of the best, raised bowls for your dog.


What is an elevated dog bowl?

An elevated dog bowl is just like it sounds; it is a dog bowl that is raised off the ground.  When many people think of dog bowls, they see two bowls sitting on the ground. While this may be fine for some dogs, there are many reasons that a dog would benefit from a bowl that was a little higher up.  

 

black lab dog using elevated feeder bowl


Top 10 Benefits of an Elevated Dog Bowl

1. Better posture

When you raise your dog's bowl, you will help improve their posture.  Bending over all the time drinking water and eating food from bowls on the floor can cause bad posture that can lead to back problems in your dog.

2. Comfort While Eating 

When you elevate your dog's bowls, you are helping to make them more comfortable when they are eating.  Older dogs usually have arthritis and joint pain.  Having to bend over to eat and drink constantly can be very painful.  

3. Certain Medical Conditions Require a Raised Bowl

Certain medical conditions, such as megaesophagus, can cause your dog to need elevated dog bowls.  By elevating your dog's bowls, it will help food move down their esophagus easier. 

4. Helps With Swallowing

Elevated dog bowls will help with swallowing.  When your dog has to bend over to drink water or eat food, they have to move food and water against gravity up the esophagus into the stomach.  When you elevate their bowls, it makes swallowing much easier.  

5. Slows Down Fast Eaters

Dogs who are known to eat fast can benefit from an elevated bowl.  This can slow them down when eating because they have to eat at a more upright position. Also, slow feeder bowls are great to use with dogs who tend to eat very fast. Neater Pets makes a slow feeder bowl that is also elevated and is a great choice for and elevated dog bowl for dogs who eat very fast. 

6. Keep Dogs From Lying Down While Eating

If your dog is lying down when they are eating, this is usually the first sign that their bowls are not high enough.  When they lay down, this is putting them in a more relaxed position to eat. Laying down and eating can cause problems with digestion.  By elevating your dog's bowls, you will allow your dogs to be in a more comfortable position that will help with digestion. 

7. Easier For You to Get to the Bowl  

By elevating your dog’s bowls, you are making them easier for you to reach.  Older people may have problems with arthritis and have difficulty bending over. If your dog's bowls are elevated, it makes it easier for you to give them food and water. 

8. Keeps Feeding Area Cleaner

If your dog's bowls are elevated, it is easier to keep the feeding area clean.  Your dog is also less likely to make a mess with bowls that are closer to their mouths.  Large dogs such as mastiffs may drip water out of their mouths after drinking. By elevating your dog's bowls, they will make less of a mess with their food and water. A great choice for a bowl to help with a dog who drool after drinking water is a Neater Feeder.  These bowls come in many different sizes and also come with leg extensions to elevate your dog's bowls. 

9. Prevents Playing in the Bowl

Many dogs and puppies love to play in their water bowl.  Some will even carry their bowls around the house. Most elevated dog bowls are in a stand that cannot be easily carried around the house.  By elevating your dog’s bowls, you will spend less time drying off your dog and floor because it is more difficult for your dog to play in their water bowl.  

10. Helps Bowls Stay In Place

Elevated dog bowls come in a stand that cannot be easily knocked over.  Some dogs will scoot their bowls across the floor with their nose or may run into them when playing in the house.  These stands stay in place much easier than bowls that sit on the floor.

 

three neater feeders for dogs

 

How to Pick Out The Perfect Bowl?

When looking for an elevated bowl, there are many different kinds and sizes to choose from. There is not one bowl that will fit the needs of every dog and every dog owner.  When looking at the sizes of bowls, there are ways to measure your dog and pick out the best size for your dog. It is best to determine the size that you need by measuring your dog from their shoulders to the ground.  Then subtract about 3 to 6 inches. This is about the height of the bowl that you want. There are many different types of bowls for you to pick from that are elevated. The bowl you pick will all depend on what type of dog you have. 

Pretty Bowls

There are bowls that are more decorated and may fit in with the decor in your house.  These are wrought iron stands and pretty bowls.  These come with a very pretty stand and bowls that would go well with most home decor.  

wrought iron feeder stand

Bowls for Dogs That Make Messes

If your dog makes a big mess while eating, there are Neater Pet bowls that help collect any water that your dog may knock out of their bowl. 

Bowls for a Dog Who Eats Fast

If your dog is a fast eater, there are slow feeder bowls to help make them slow down while eating that can also be elevated.  These bowls have many small indentations that your dog has to maneuver around to get to their food. 


There are many reasons that you would want to feed your dog from an elevated dog bowl, when looking for a bowl there are different types of bowls that you need to consider.  Most of these bowls have multiple purposes that you need to consider. When looking for a great elevated dog bowl, Neater Pets has a great selection of dog bowls for you to pick from that will help keep your dog happy and healthy for years.